ICBC Insurance When Vehicle Owner Does Not Live in BC

My friend wants me to help him to occasionally pick up items he's purchased at auction. My car is tiny so he said he'd buy a small van that I can use. My question is... Should he buy one in BC? can he insure it through ICBC even though he's an Alberta resident (I live in BC but I don't want to have 2 vehicles to insure); in short, can I be "primary driver" on ICBC insurance, driving a BC car which is owned and insured by an Alberta resident?

Simple answer is yes. The

Simple answer is yes. The question is how long. If you buy a car in Alberta drive back to BC with it you can get insurance in Alberta to cover you. In BC you have x amount of time to change it over it's on the ICBC website.

It can be done it's kind of a hassle since once you go over you get a out of province registration which means you don't have the history of the car which can turn off some sellers. If you go from alberta to BC you also have to pass an inspection I think the same is for BC to alberta so to transfer over it might cost some money to do so.


From my years of traffic policing I have seen vehicles licensed and insured in BC that were owned by a person or persons who did not live in BC. While this is typically common with commercial vehicles, passenger vehicles may be treated this way as well. I looked at the vehicle registration pages on ICBC's web site but it only contains the basic information common to vehicles and owners in BC. There is advice to contact and work with an Autoplan Agent for any other answer.

Depending on how the van is configured, it could be registered as a commercial vehicle rather than a passenger vehicle:

"commercial vehicle" includes

(a) a motor vehicle having permanently attached to it a truck or delivery body,

Vans with only front seats and a cargo area could fall into this category.

That said, your best bet at this point is to either contact ICBC or your local Autoplan Agent for further advice.

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